Seniors’ Column

This week's column focuses on recognizing the volunteers of our community.

Volunteer Week is observed this year from April 10-16.

It’s a time when our complement of dedicated volunteers are honoured for their services aimed at ensuring a strong measure of safety and continuity which highlights the variety of positive aspects within our community, which make us a sought-after place to reside within, enjoy and take pride in.

As we are often reminded, Nakusp region volunteers are an essential part of our amazing community at all times of the year. Just a few examples of groups and organizations, which are run by volunteers, include our award-winning public library, archives and museum as well as hospital auxiliary thrift shop sometimes known as one of our area’s keenest social centres where we meet our friends and take time out to find and enjoy a delightful treasure of highly affordable second-use or re-purposed items, which are donated by members of the recycling public.

Without a doubt, volunteerism serves as a core component of not only local activities, but also becomes a way of life, throughout all parts of the province.

An estimated 1.5 million BC volunteers contribute 114 million hours of service to communities all across the province, according to Statistics Canada. That is equivalent to 60,000 full-time jobs. This volunteer force (combined with the 147,000 paid staff work in the over 20,000 BC nonprofit and voluntary organizations), makes the voluntary sector one of the largest social and economic drivers in the province, generating $11 billion in annual revenues.

For over 30 years, Volunteer BC has served as the provincial leader in promoting the value and impact of volunteerism which in turn enhances the abilities of volunteer-involving organizations. This important organization focuses on promoting the value and impact of enhancing the collaborative spirit, expertise and energy of all participants within the volunteerism movement in order to help build for all of us, a better British Columbia.

Over 30 volunteer centres province-wide form a primary network. These centres act as local catalysts of community involvement, serving as clearinghouses of resources which provide support to local and grassroots organizations, in involving volunteers.

Volunteer BC serves as a convening network, having a broad membership with both provincial as well as national connections in addition to extensive knowledge of the sector.

Consortium members (over 30 organizations) are provincial in scope and involve volunteers in a variety of areas, including sport, recreation, health, education, the arts, social and community services, to name just a few.


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